The Northern Nevada volleyball officiating group is looking for a few more good men and women.
Numbers have dwindled over the years, and the local chapter has barely 30 officials to cover high school games from Carson all the way to Gabbs. The lack of officials has at times forced schools to switch the days of their games or only go with one official on JV and freshman games. Neither is a good situation.
Martin Hommel, a board member and a seven-year veteran, has been on the lookout for new faces.
"We'd like to have experienced officials," Hommel said recently. "Sometimes, some (good) officials have moved into the area and we're happy when that happens. We have a good training program to help people who have never done it before. We want people that are serious about doing it. We could use at least 10 new people."
Hommel himself started in the sport without knowing much about it, and he regularly officiates 4A games now.
"When I started, I'd done zero ball," he said. "I hunkered down, went to clinics and learned the game."
Hommel said that when he first started in the group there were around 50 officials, and that was more than enough except on the busiest of nights.
"Some people moved away and other people were disgusted with their schedules," said Hommel, explaining why the group has lost so many people in the past five or six years.
Hommel said that clinics for the upcoming season are scheduled for Aug. 18 in Reno and Aug. 20 in Douglas County.
"People can go to one or both of the clinics," Hommel said. "At our meetings, there is always some sort of training attached. One other thing we do is pair an experienced official with a new official."
Hommel said the association has a woman that goes out and evaluates all the officials during the course of the season.
Also, officiating isn't a bad way to supplement your income. Referees on the freshman and JV level are paid $30 with the umpire receiving $25. Varsity referees make $60 and umpires make $48. That's not a bad wage considering almost all matches, especially on freshman and JV level, are over within 90 minutes.
Anybody interested in officiating volleyball during the upcoming high school season can contact Hommel at 782-1001 for more information.
NEWS OUT OF NEVADA
According to a report in a Northern Nevada publication, it appears that 6-7 power forward Richie Phillips will redshirt this year at Nevada.
Phillips, who is finishing up high school in the Seattle (Washington) area, is the only player, new or old, that wasn't in summer school. As a rule, coach Mark Fox likes to see his players get coursework done during the summer so the players can take less classes during the season.
The redshirt year would certainly give Phillips time to adjust to college life and college academics.
Fox was recently in Atlanta on a recruiting trip, but it's not known whether it's to fill his last scholarship this season or if he's looking at players who are just starting their senior years.
A scholarship became open when Jeremy Mayfield, a 6-10 forward-center from the Dallas area, failed to qualify academically.
One of the things that has left me befuddled in my short career in Northern Nevada is the way schools do their football schedules.
In places like California, schools are free to schedule any school they want after meeting their conference obligations. Not so in Nevada. According to a couple of coaches, there is a committee that determines the schedule each year.
Ludicrous. Schools should be allowed to go into California to play nonconference games. I'll tell you what, it would be cheaper for Douglas to play Nevada Union, Ponderosa or Union Mine instead of going all the way up to Elko.
Let's face it we all know that the Sacramento and East Bay produce superior teams every year, and I think it would help Northern Nevada schools if they had that option.
Darrell Moody can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org, or by calling (775) 881-1281